Sensex loses 318 points, Nifty ends below 7500; SBI, GAIL tank 6%

3:30 pm Market Closing: Equity benchmarks ended at 19-month closing low amid late sell-off on Friday. The Sensex crashed 317.93 points or 1.28 percent to 24455.04 and the Nifty fell 99 points or 1.31 percent to 7437.80. Banking & financials, metals, infra and FMCG stocks dragged the market but Reliance Industries and Infosys capped downside.

Nearly six shares declined for every share advancing on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Vedanta, SBI, GAIL, BHEL, NTPC, Axis Bank, PNB and Cairn India were top losers, down 4-8 percent while Infosys, Reliance Industries, Dr Reddy's Labs, Maruti Suzuki, BPCL, Tech Mahindra and HCL Technologies were only gainers.

3:03 pm Market sinks: Equity benchmarks fell further in late trade following correction in crude oil prices and Europe.

The 30-share BSE Sensex tanked 330.75 points or 1.34 percent to 24442.22 and the 50-share NSE Nifty fell 101.95 points or 1.35 percent to 7434.85.

The market breadth was pathetic as more than five shares declined for every share advancing on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

2:50 pm HUL earnings: Hindustan Unilever's October-December quarter earnings disappointed analysts on Friday with profit sinking 22.4 percent year-on-year to Rs 971 crore. Exceptional loss, slow revenue growth and lower other income hurt profitability.

Revenue increased 2.7 percent to Rs 7,981 crore in quarter ended December 2015 compared to Rs 7,774 crore in corresponding quarter of last fiscal with volume growth of 6 percent.

Topline and bottomline missed analysts' expectations while operational performance and volume growth matched estimates. Profit was expected at Rs 1,073 crore (down 14 percent) and revenue at Rs 8,220 crore (up 5.7 percent) with volume growth range of 6-7 percent for the quarter, according to average of estimates of analysts polled by CNBC-TV18.

2:40 pm Crude, Rupee extends losses: NYMEX crude fell below USD 30 a barrel, down 4.87 percent to USD 29.68.

The rupee weakened past 67.50 per dollar, down 0.4 percent to 67.56 a dollar.

2:30 pm Nifty below 7500: The market extended losses in afternoon trade with the Nifty breaking 7500 level, dragged by ICICI Bank, Tata Motors, ITC, SBI, L&T and HUL that fell 1-3 percent.

The Sensex declined 147.61 points or 0.60 percent to 24625.36. About three shares declined for every share advancing on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

2:20 pm FM on Fiscal Consolidation: Government said it will stick to its fiscal consolidation roadmap without compromising on development spending and expenditure budgeted for the current fiscal.

"Government is committed to promoting and strengthening inclusive and sustainable development by ensuring proper and effective utilisation of funds provided in the Annual Budget without compromising fiscal consolidation," finance ministry said in statement here.

As a result of sound prudent policies formulated during 2015-16, the fiscal deficit at the end of November is Rs 4.83 lakh crore or 87 percent of the Budget Estimate for this fiscal.

"The fiscal deficit i.e. the gap between expenditure and revenue, for the entire current fiscal year has been pegged at Rs 5.55 lakh crore (3.9 percent of GDP)," it said. The government had set a fiscal deficit target of 3.9 percent of the GDP for the current fiscal.

2:00 pm Market Check
The market remained marginally lower amid consolidation with the Sensex falling 35.95 points to 24737.02 and the Nifty declining 15.40 points to 7521.40. The broader markets have fallen more compared to benchmarks; the BSE Midcap was down 0.6 percent and Smallcap lost 0.9 percent.

More than two shares declined for every share advancing on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

European markets traded lower as Chinese stocks closed sharply lower and the oil price continued to come under pressure. Miners led stocks lower after BHP Billiton announced a huge impairment charge against its US assets. France's CAC, Germany's DAX and Britain's FTSE declined 0.2-0.5 percent.

The market continued to be directionless in afternoon trade. FMCG, metals, infra, select pharma and banks stocks remained under pressure while Reliance Industries, Infosys and HDFC Group stocks supported.

The Sensex declined 46.90 points to 24726.07 and the Nifty fell 12.75 points to 7524.05. The broader markets also turned lower with the BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices down 0.3-0.6 percent.

The market breadth was also weak as about two shares declined for every share advancing on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

The rupee touched fresh 28-month low, trading at 67.41 a dollar, down 12 paise compared to previous close.

ICICI Bank, Tata Motors, NTPC, SBI, GAIL, ONGC, HUL and Bajaj Auto were down 1-3 percent while Reliance Industries rallied 2.4 percent followed by Infosys, Maruti Suzuki and Dr Reddy's Labs.

Asian markets ended lower despite positive lead from Wall Street. Shanghai lost 3.5 percent and Nikkei was down 0.5 percent. NYMEX crude fell 2.6 percent to USD 30.39 a barrel.

12:40 pm Suzlon gets more funds: Wind turbine maker Suzlon Group today said it has received an additional credit facility of Rs 2,300 crore above the existing working capital lines (of Rs 4,300 crore) to meet its requirements for execution of projects.

Suzlon Group CFO Kirti Vagadia said: "The additional working capital facilities sanctioned by our bankers will help fuel Suzlon's business grwoth and enable us to ramp up volumes rapidly...it will also enable us to capitalise on opportunities in renewable sector in India."

12:20 pm IDBI Bank's fund raising: Public sector lender IDBI Bank it will raise Rs 3,771 crore instead of an earlier plan of raising Rs 2,800 crore through qualified institutional plans (QIP) route.

"Board of Directors of the bank has approved revising the QIP issue size from Rs 2,800 crore approved by the Board on November 04, 2015 to Rs 3,771 crore, in line with the Government of India's approval dated December 30, 2015," IDBI said in a BSE filing.

12:00 pm Market Check
Equity benchmarks remained under pressure in noon trade with the Sensex down 61.29 points to 24711.68 and the Nifty falling 18.65 points to 7518.15, tracking weak Asian cues.

The market breadth was also in favour of declines with (decline:advance ratio) 1320:961.

Wockhardt tanked 11 percent after 62,555 bottles of Azithromycin tablets manufactured by company are being recalled by PD-Rx Pharmaceuticals Inc in the US market. Antibiotic Azithromycin is used for treatment of bacterial infections.

Major Asian stock markets struggled to hold onto their morning gains Friday, despite a positive finish from Wall Street overnight.

In another late spate of sell-offs, the Shanghai composite down 3.97 percent. The ASX 200 closed down 16.58 points, or 0.34 percent, at 4,892.80, after trading at a session high of 4,997.10 in the morning.

South Korea's Kospi also erased gains to close down 21.14 points, or 1.11 percent, at 1,878.87 while Japan's Nikkei 225, which was initially up by as much as 1.77 percent, fell into negative territory, finishing 93.84 points, or 0.54 percent, lower at 17,147.11.

11:30 am Citi on IndiGo: Citi has initiated its coverage on InterGlobe Aviation with a neutral rating and target price of Rs 1,300 apiece, given a 60 percent run-up in the stock from listing in November 2015. The stock gained 1.7 percent intraday Friday.

Reflecting decline in fuel prices (with Brent now sub USD 30 a barrel), combined with IndiGo's competitive position, traffic growth prospects and A320neo orders, the brokerage believes InterGlobe can grow EBITDAR more than 27 percent in FY17.

IndiGo Airlines, the operating arm of InterGlobe Aviation, is a low-cost carrier (LCC) with a commanding 36 percent share of the domestic Indian market (November 2015). As the eighth-largest LCC globally, IndiGo operates a leased fleet of around 100 Airbus A320s, with an order for an additional 430 next-generation A320neos (offering 15%+ better fuel efficiency).

11:00 am Market Check
The market erased early gains with the Sensex shedding more than 150 points from day's high, dragged by banking & financials, FMCG and infra stocks.

The Sensex declined 82.83 points to 24690.14 and the Nifty fell 30.80 points to 7506.00. The market breadth also turned weak as about 1132 shares declined against 971 advancing shares on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Hindustan Unilever dropped 1 percent ahead of its third quarter earnings. Numbers are likely to be tepid during the quarter with net profit down 14 percent year-on-year to Rs 1,073 crore. Revenue is seen rising 5.7 percent to Rs 8220 crore in same period.

US crude oil futures fell, heading lower after posting the first significant gains for 2016 in the previous session, as the prospect of additional Iranian supply looms over the market. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was down 61 cents at USD 30.59 a barrel. On Thursday, the contract rose 72 cents, or 2.4 percent, to settle at USD 31.20. It hit a 12-year low of USD 29.93 earlier this week.

10:30 am Provisions set to rise: The Reserve Bank of India Governor Raghuram Rajan had recently stated his intention to clean up balance sheets of banks by March 2017 but had not outlined specific steps that the central bank wanted to take.

Sources say the RBI wants banks to provide for 150 bad accounts by March 2016.

These 150 accounts account for 2 percent of total bad assets in the sector, or close to tune of Rs 1.5 lakh crore. Sources also say that if the RBI enforces this step, gross non-performing assets (NPAs) of banks could rise by 2 percent to 7.5 percent in the current year

Speaking in detail about the above developments, Nikhil Rungta, Research Analyst at Anand Rathi Institutional Research says the market has not factored in the further increase in provisions and so it is unlikely that the Bank Nifty is under stress because of this.

10:00 am Market Check
The market continued to be volatile due to lack of domestic and global cues. The Sensex declined 2.35 points to 24770.62 and the Nifty fell 4.80 points to 7532. The broader markets marginally outperformed benchmarks.

The market breadth was slightly positive as about 1107 shares advanced against 837 declining shares on the BSE.

Reliance Industries gained strength again after yesterday's break, up more than 2 percent followed by Infosys and Maruti Suzuki.

Tata Motors, ONGC, Lupin, HUL, GAIL, Bajaj Auto, NTPC and BHEL were down 1-3 percent.

Chinese equities were lower, with the main Shanghai composite down 1.5 percent. Before market open, the People's Bank of China (PBOC) set the yuan mid-point fix at 6.5637, compared with Thursday's fix of 6.5616. The dollar-yuan pair traded 0.04 percent lower at 6.5867.

9:45 am Crude Update: US crude oil futures fell, heading lower after posting the first significant gains for 2016 in the previous session, as the prospect of additional Iranian supply looms over the market. 
West Texas Intermediate (WTI) was down 50 cents at USD 30.70 a barrel. On Thursday the contract rose 72 cents, or 2.4 percent, to settle at USD 31.20. It hit a 12-year low of USD 29.93 earlier this week.

WTI is on track to post a third consecutive weekly loss, down more than 6 percent. The contract is down nearly 18 percent from a 2016 high on January 4.

Brent crude was yet to trade. The global benchmark settled up 72 cents, or 2.4 percent, at USD 31.03 a barrel on Thursday. Earlier in the session, it rose to USD 31.23 after falling to USD 29.73, its weakest since February 2004.

9:30 am Tata Steel in news: An Indian-origin family owned steel firm, Liberty House, is said to be a new potential buyer of two of Tata Steel 's Scottish plants, on the verge of closure due to the crisis in the industry.

Liberty House, headed by managing director Sanjeev Gupta, had recently acquired a number of units of another UK-based steel firm, Caparo Industries, owned by noted NRI industrialist Lord-Swraj Paul.

While the company has refused to comment at this stage, Scotland's business minister has indicated that a potential deal may be in the works for acquiring the Dalzell and Clydebridge plants in Scotland's Lanarkshire region.

9:15 am Market Check
The market has opened volatile on last day of the week following mixed Asian cues. Investors digested crude oil correction and China concerns. The 30-share BSE Sensex rose 66.42 points to 24839.39 and the 50-share NSE Nifty advanced 13.45 points to 7550.25.

The market breadth was strong as about four shares advanced for every share declining on the Bombay Stock Exchange. The BSE Midcap gained 0.5 percent and Smallcap rose 0.7 percent.

Infosys, Dr Reddy's Labs, Tata Steel, Maruti Suzuki, Hindalco, Vedanta and Idea Cellular gained 1-2 percent while ONGC, Tata Motors, Larsen & Toubro, ITC, HDFC Bank, HCL Technologies and Kotak Mahindra Bank were losers in early trade.

The Indian rupee slipped in the early trade today. It opened lower by 6 paise at 67.35 per dollar versus 67.29 Thursday.

Dollar gain bolstered by gains in the US stock market and a rebound in oil prices.

Asian markets were trading mixed with the Nikkei rising 0.2 percent despite positive lead from Wall Street. Shanghai extended losses, down 1.5 percent and Hang Seng fell 0.8 percent.